Idiocy aside, IT must go green

"Enviro-mentalism" may be contradictory nonsense, but IT bosses must obey its impacts!
Written by Darren Greenwood, Contributor

"Enviro-mentalism" may be contradictory nonsense, but IT bosses must obey its impacts!

I'm a bit of a sceptic when it comes to all this "Climate Change" and "sustainability" nonsense.

I remember those eco-friendly light-bulbs containing all that deadly mercury.

I remember the push for biofuels, which worsened starvation in the Third World and destroyed animal habitat. Yet, biofuels were eventually found to produce just as much carbon dioxide as traditional fuels.

But come what may, governments are pushing ahead with their "enviro-mental" policies and IT bosses must be aware of their regulations and related impacts.

Kevin Rudd may well have deferred his Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), but he is planning to spend $30 million of your cash to brainwash Australians into becoming "believers" again, and to give him the courage to introduce his ETS once more.

Britain has just elected what its new PM David Cameron calls its "greenest government ever" — which I am sure is not a reference to the inexperienced people in it.

And despite growing domestic opposition, New Zealand will introduce its own ETS on 1 July.

Analysts at IDC staged a seminar in Auckland on Green IT and sustainability this month. Its message was that dumping old infrastructure will save on carbon emissions.

This may well be true, but resellers often tell me of the nasty and polluting chemicals, plus rare and precious metals, found in computers.

By driving new infrastructure demand as IDC advises, won't this also harm the environment? Extra land will be laid waste as mining companies dig for the raw materials used to make computers and servers. Then, there's the carbon produced in manufacture.

It's a bit like using windmills to generate power. They look ugly and it's not always windy. When it is, the windmills chop up your bird life.

Yet, the carbon gods must be appeased.

Even more so must the god Mammon. When New Zealand starts with its ETS, there will be higher fuel prices for all.

Regardless of actual climate realities, to protect the bottom line for their employers, IT bosses will have to promote new technologies like video-conferencing or more energy efficient computing, as IDC advises.

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